Working for another employer during a career break: measure is extended until 30 June 2021

Author: Catherine Legardien (Legal Expert)

The measure that allows the employee taking a career break to work for another employer belonging to the healthcare and education sector or operating a facility/centre in charge of contact tracing, is extended until 30 June 2021. Moreover, since 15 February 2021, this employment is also possible for activities related to the operation of a vaccination centre.

Which employees are concerned?

The employees concerned are those who have completely suspended or reduced their working time (to a half-time job, by 1/5 or 1/10) within the framework of time credit or thematic leave (hereinafter referred to as 'career break').

Which sectors are concerned?

The possibility to work during a career break is only available for employment by another employer belonging to the healthcare and education sector or operating a facility/centre in charge of contact tracing in order to limit the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.

More specifically, the healthcare sectors are as follows: (public and private) services of care, reception and assistance to persons, the elderly, minors, disabled persons and vulnerable persons, including victims of intra-family violence. As far as the private sector is concerned, these services or organisations specifically belong to the following joint committees:

  • JC no. 318 (Joint Committee for the home help and elderly caregiver services);
  • JC no. 319 (Joint Committee for the educational and housing institutions and services);
  • JC no. 330 (Joint committee for healthcare facilities and services);
  • JC no. 331 (Joint committee for the Flemish welfare and health sector);
  • JC no. 332 (Joint Committee for the French-speaking, German-speaking and bi-communal welfare and health sector);
  • JC no. 322 (Joint Committee for the temporary agency sector and accredited undertakings providing community-based work or services, in so far as the temporary agency worker is employed by a user belonging to one of the joint committees mentioned above).

Since 15 February 2021, the "healthcare sector" also includes public or private institutions and services in charge of the operation of vaccination centres in the context of combating the COVID-19 coronavirus and this for all activities linked to the operation of the vaccination centre.

What is possible in practice?

During his career break, the employee may be temporarily employed by another employer belonging to the sectors concerned (healthcare or education) or operating a facility/centre in charge of contact tracing.

The parties (the employee and the other employer) must conclude a written fixed-term contract. The end date of that contract cannot be later than 30 June 2021, the planned end date of this measure.

The employee retains his career break benefit at the expense of the ONEm/RVA. However, the amount of the career break benefit is reduced by 1/4th for the duration of the employment contract.

What are the formalities towards the ONEm/RVA?

The employee must inform the ONEm/RVA in writing of the temporary employment by another employer. This is done using a form that can be downloaded from the ONEm/RVA website.

The ONEm/RVA will then send the employee a letter confirming that the notification of the employment by another employer has been taken note of.

Sources: Act of 2 April 2021 on temporary support measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Belgian Official Gazette 13 April 2021 ; ONEm/RVA.

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